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Categorized | From the Pulpit

Nature and Love and Nature

Pastor Dallas Burgeson 

The Springs Church 

135 N. Grant St., Cedar Springs

Before the world ground to a halt in March with the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, my wife and I had the chance to fly to California to celebrate our 15th wedding anniversary. It was during the flight there that the love started to ignite. Joy and I lived for a brief time in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and while we loved it there, it was over Utah that I saw the American West sprawl out before me at 30,000 feet, and I was hooked in a way that felt fresh, overwhelming, and new. 

Once we landed in Sacramento, Joy and I spent the next week on the best road trip I’ve ever been on:

San Francisco–its unique culture and its magnificent bridges, then Highway 1.

Santa Cruz–its unique culture and its gnarled redwoods, then more Highway 1.

A little seaside place called Mt. Carmel, a bed-and-breakfast, and morning coffee by the bay.

Then… along a stretch of Highway 1 that the previous stretches simply couldn’t have prepared us for: sheer, greened cliffs and waters without end. The navigation of curve after curve as rocks jutted one after another out into the Pacific; 360-degree vistas like I’ve never experienced. I felt torn for hours on end, loving getting to drive these amazing roads, and yet aching to spend longer soaking in the landscape at the same time.

We eventually hit our southern-most destination: the mansion of early 20th century newspaper giant William Randolph Hearst. And while the buildings were truly impressive, the hilltop view Hearst chose for his world-famous social gatherings eclipsed his incessant, spare-no-expense construction project in every possible way. We were standing on top of the world.

Nature somehow drags a love out of us we cannot explain. Our awestruck-ness at it all becomes so repetitive it begins to feel almost routine, while Nature itself appears inexhaustible. 

The heartbeat of this Nature that makes our own hearts burn has a Source, and it’s found in its Creator’s nature. The mystery is in recognizing that this nature we all love… and His personal nature revealed in Scripture… are somehow held within the same Being: “Heaven is declaring God’s glory; the sky is proclaiming his handiwork. One day gushes the news to the next, and one night informs another what needs to be known.” (Psalm 19:1-2, CEB)

This summer as you take off and behold this nature God has created, don’t be drawn away from the aspects of His nature revealed only in His Word: His love, mercy, patience and faithfulness. Even if you’re still social distancing, don’t give up the mundane magic that happens when even two or three gather in His name, let alone the vibrancy of a weekly congregation. God’s nature outshines even what we experience in His Creation. Come drink at the wells of who He is by exploring every possible stream of revelation He has given us.

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